New cars 2014

Last updated: Aug 12, 2014

There's been plenty of excitement within the motor industry in 2014 thanks to the launch of a wide range of new cars. There's still more to come in the final few months of the year and, as ever, there will be new technology, fuel-efficient engines and lighter construction materials on show. The vast majority of the new vehicles unveiled will be more economical than ever but still offer buyers improved performance and equipment levels.

Touchscreen infotainment systems have gone from cutting-edge technology only found in the most expensive cars to standard-fit equipment in many new ones and they are getting larger and easier to use, controlling everything from sat-nav, air-conditioning and stereo controls to apps on your mobile phone.

Small city cars like Peugeot 107, Citroen C1 and Toyota Ayo, which share a lot of the same parts, are all 2014 debutants and bigger cars like the new MINI hatchback and Mercedes C-Class saloon have also been launched this year. The third-generation Audi TT recently became available to order and the seven-seater Nissan X-Trail is now on sale too.

The new Ford Focus and Nissan Juke are essentially facelifted versions of the old models but they have been hotly anticipated because they're such big sellers in the UK. Read on for the top ten best new cars of the year.

Mercedes C-Class saloon

Arguably the biggest launch of the year was the new Mercedes C-Class. Mercedes set itself the target of beating both the Audi A4 and the BMW 3 Series with the new car and to do that the C-Class has a classy interior, a very comfortable suspension setup and engines that are up to 20 per cent more efficient than the old model. For now there is a choice of a petrol engine or two diesels but AMG versions and a hybrid will join the range soon. Read more.

Key points

4.1 / 5
Price 
£27,195 - £66,545

Audi TT Coupe (2006-2014)

In August of 2014, the order book opened for the third version of the Audi TT, one of Audi’s most famous models. Some say the redesigned car is not radically different enough from the outgoing model (pictured) but the changes definitely give the new TT an updated, modern look. The new chrome grille brings the coupe in to line with Audi’s current design aesthetic and a 12.3-inch screen behind the steering wheel replaces conventional dials. Audi’s new Multi Media Interface (MMI) gets it debut in the new TT, as do smart LED headlights that can stay on full beam without blinding drivers in oncoming traffic. Audi has made the car lighter, faster and more efficient than the model it replaces. Read more.

Key points

4.4 / 5

Vauxhall Corsa hatchback (2006-2014)

The look of the new Vauxhall Corsa, particularly the front, owes much to the firm’s popular city car the Vauxhall Adam. Inside, Vauxhall has worked hard to improve the interior relative to the outgoing model and will offer the new car with its IntelliLink seven-inch touchscreen system, to which you can connect your mobile phone. The car will make its debut at the Paris Motor Show in October and from launch will be available with a new 1.0-litre petrol engine, as well as an updated version of the current Corsa’s 1.3-litre diesel engine. Customisation is now a big draw for customers, so the new Corsa is set to offer plenty of options in that regard. Read more.

Key points

2.4 / 5

MINI hatchback

BMW has not rested on its laurels with the MINI – despite the old car’s popularity, the manufacturer has built a new version that is both more economical and more powerful in all models. The new Cooper D model can do 0-62mph in just 7.8 seconds, yet is still capable of more than 70mpg. The interior of the new MINI is plusher than ever before and has a striking, centrally mounted circular screen for control of the infotainment system and the car’s settings. Boot space is up 30 per cent in an effort to address criticisms of the previous model’s practicality. Read more.

Key points

4.1 / 5
Price 
£13,750 - £21,070

Ford Focus hatchback (2011-2014)

Unlike some of the cars here, the 2014 Ford Focus is more of a facelifted model than an all-new car. Nonetheless, the new model addresses one of the focus’ biggest problems – non-descript looks. The new car (it’s the old car pictured) is much more striking thanks to a classy chrome grille. It also gets a better quality cabin, kit such as Ford’s SYNC 2 infotainment system, which can read aloud incoming text messages, and a range of new engines. The car’s suspension has also been updated and the Focus should remain the most fun-to-drive model in its class. Read more.

Key points

4.4 / 5

Nissan X-Trail SUV

The hotly anticipated new Nissan X-Trail is another car scheduled for launch in 2014. It gets sleek new looks, much like the 2013 Nissan Qashqai, and a hugely improved interior, with equipment such as a touchscreen display, Bluetooth and cruise control. The X-Trail’s now the only Nissan SUV available with seven seats, and also gets a grippy four-wheel-drive system that can switch to two-wheel drive to save fuel. That, and kit like stop-start technology, mean the new X-Trail will be far more economical than the old version. Read more.

Key points

4.2 / 5
Price 
£22,995 - £30,995

Renault Twingo hatchback (2007-2014)

Renault’s aging Twingo (pictured) is also set for replacement and it could be one of the more revolutionary models to go on sale in 2014. The new Renault Twingo has a rear-mounted engine, to free up more space in the passenger compartment, and rear-wheel drive that means it has an extremely tight turning circle. Buyers can choose between two engines – with 69bhp or 89bhp – which should return close to 70mpg and qualify for free road tax. Expect the Twingo to come with plenty of options, for customisable looks, and there is also talk of a quick Renaultsport version. Read more.

Key points

2.4 / 5

Nissan Juke SUV

The facelifted Nissan Juke (pictured here) is set to arrive in June. The new car is much more customisable than the current model and buyers can choose to spec colour inserts for the wheels, as well as various exterior packs. The 2013 Juke gets a new 1.2-litre petrol engine that replaces the current car’s 1.6-litre engine and boasts higher economy and lower CO2 emissions, for cheaper running costs. The new model gets a revised sat-nav system, as well as options such as a 360-degree camera, blind spot monitoring, and safety assist. Read more.

Key points

3.6 / 5
Price 
£13,420 - £21,420

Toyota Aygo city car

The new Toyota Aygo is based on revised versions of the Citroen C1 and Peugeot 108. The new car gets an updated version of the old car’s engine – so it will be even more economical – and Toyota has worked hard to make the new car quieter on the motorway. More obvious are the striking new looks and the X-grille front end that arguably make the Aygo the best looking of the trio. Interior space is also up and the Aygo gets a bigger boot and optional technology such as a seven-inch touchscreen, with sat-nav, which can be combined with a host of new apps. Read more.

Key points

3.2 / 5
Price 
£8,595 - £12,395

Skoda Fabia hatchback

The new Skoda Fabia uses the same structure as the current Volkswagen Golf, albeit a shortened version, and will share its parts with the new SEAT Ibiza and the Volkswagen Polo. The Skoda gets a host of economical engines that should reduce running costs significantly, without affecting performance. Expect the new model to get more space, lots of new kit, and a more refined cabin. Central to the car’s interior will be a new infotainment system, with the option to spec sat-nav. The fast Skoda Fabia vRS is likely to be dropped on the new model. Read more.

Key points

4.3 / 5

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